Lasagna Roll-Ups stuffed with Chicken and Italian Cheeses

Have you ever had a Lasagna Roll-Up? These things are awesome! Great for supper time, pretty as an appetizer or to serve up something different at your next pot luck. I’ve made Lasagna Roll-Ups using just an Italian Cheese filler, with Italian Sausage, a traditional meat filling and with today’s share, cooked chicken. Any cooked chicken will do, from last night’s left over roasted chicken to a rotisserie chicken from your local deli. To transform this recipe into an appetizer, simply cut the lasagna noodle in half width-wise to create two short noodles. Fill as you normally would, roll tightly and then cut in half again. Bake, remove from pan with cocktail skewers and plate with some Marinara Sauce for dipping. As a supper, the lasagna roll-ups are great for kids since the rolled lasagna is easier for little hands to handle. For a fancier presentation, ladle some sauce in the center of a plate, place three roll-ups upright in the sauce and top with some fresh basil for garnish. Paired with some warm, soft bread sticks and a nice Italian salad, you’ve got the makings for a supper fit for company. The sky is the limit.

The pasta sauce for this dish can be any red sauce of your choosing. I like to mix mine with some Italian-Style chopped tomatoes for extra flavor and texture. Fresh, chopped Roma tomatoes also work well when in season.

Chicken and Italian Cheese Stuffed Lasagna Roll-Ups 
8 Lasagna Noodles, cooked
3 cups Chicken, cooked
1/4 cup Milk
1 cup Ricotta Cheese
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/8 teaspoon white pepper (just a pinch)
3/4 Cup Baby Spinach, torn into pieces
2 cups Pasta Sauce
1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
1/2 Cup Basil, finely chopped

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook Lasagna noodles until just al-dente. Drain and lay noodles flat on a baking pan in a single layer until ready to fill. By laying the pasta out flat, this will make rolling tightly a little easier. The pasta should be warm and pliable.

While the water comes to a boil and the Lasagna noodles cook, prepare the filling.

Shred/chop cooked chicken meat as you would for chicken salad, into smaller pieces that will blend easily with the rest of the filling mixture. Place chicken in a medium bowl. Combine chicken with milk, Ricotta and feta cheeses.  Season with pepper. Stir/fold mixture to blend.

Spread about 1/2 cup of the filling mixture on each Lasagna noodle. Top chicken mixture with a sprinkling of torn baby spinach leaves. Press lightly to hold spinach in the cheese mixture.

Roll each filled noodle jelly-roll fashion. Spread pasta sauce into a 13″ x 9″ baking dish. Arrange Lasagna rolls, seam-side down on top of the sauce in the baking dish.

Cover baking dish with foil and bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or until hot.

While pasta is baking, finely chop fresh basil. In a small bowl, mix basil with Parmesan cheese and set aside until ready to use.

Once roll-ups are hot, remove from oven, remove foil and sprinkle with basil/Parmesan mixture. Return to the oven, bake another 8-10 minutes or until cheese has melted and is just beginning to brown.

Serve and enjoy! If desired, drizzle with some of the pasta sauce and more Parmesan cheese.

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